They say piano players rarely ever play together, but at least this time they'll share some impressive honors. Art Neville and Eddie Bo will both receive tributes for their impact on the New Orleans music scene at the 16th annual Big Easy Entertainment Awards.
Art Neville, co-founder of the Hawkettes, the Meters and the Neville Brothers and a master of the Hammond B-3 organ, will receive the Big Easy Entertainment Awards' Lifetime Achievement Award in Music. Bo, songwriter, keyboard player extraordinaire and record producer, will serve as the honorary music chairman while aiding returning master of ceremonies Harry Shearer (National Public Radio, The Simpsons) in handing out the awards. They will be joined by 92-year-old trumpet player Lionel Ferbos, who will receive the Music Heritage Award. Ferbos' storied career includes work with the Creole Serenaders, the musical One Mo' Time and the Pretty Baby soundtrack along with his weekly performance at the Palm Court Cafe.
The Big Easy Entertainment Awards, which honors achievement in local music and theater, will be held at 6 p.m. Monday, April 21, in the Grand Ballroom of the Hilton Riverside New Orleans Hotel.
V.I.P. tickets are $125 and include an open bar, buffet dinner, special reserved seating for the awards ceremonies and the Celebration Bash at Club 360 that follows. Tables for 10 are $1,000 if purchased by March 31. To purchase tickets contact Lindsay Moylan at 486-5900, ext. 160. The Big Easy Entertainment Awards benefit the Foundation for Entertainment Development and Education, which supports projects that nurture the future talent of New Orleans in the performing arts. Sponsors include Absolut Vodka, Harrah's New Orleans Casino, John Jay, Gambit Weekly, Barefoot Wine Cellars, Coleman E. Adler & Sons, and Mardi Gras Productions.
2003 MUSIC NOMINEES
Leroy Jones Quintet
Ronnie Magri & His New Orleans Jazz Band
Dr. Michael White
Edward "Kidd" Jordan
Kermit Ruffins & The Barbecue Swingers
TRADITIONAL BRASS BAND
Tuba Fats & the Chosen Few
Olympia Brass Band
Gregg Stafford & the Young Tuxedo Brass Band
CONTEMPORARY BRASS BAND
Dirty Dozen Brass Band
ReBirth Brass Band
McDonough No. 35 High School Gospel Choir
Shiloh Baptist Church Mass Choir
Tyrone Foster & The Arc Singers
Paulette Wright Davis
Brotherhood of Groove
Papa Grows Funk
RHYTHM & BLUES
Jon Cleary & the Absolute Monster Gentlemen
Walter "Wolfman" Washington & the Roadmasters
Geno Delafose & French Rockin' Boogie
Nathan & the Zydeco Cha Chas
Steve Riley & the Mamou Playboys
The Savoy-Doucet Band
Kelly Love Jones
Produced by Michael Pellara
Recorded live at Word of Mouth Studio, Algiers
Jon Cleary & The Absolute Monster Gentlemen
Basin Street Records
Produced by John Porter
Recorded at Sir Ronald Pudding's Emporium of Groove in Los Angeles and Lucy Lou's Palace of Fonk in the French Quarter, New Orleans
Here Comes The Trick
Produced by Jay Joyce and recorded at his studio in Nashville, Tenn.
Basin Street Records
Produced by Tracey Freeman
Recorded at Ultrasonic Studios in New Orleans
- Art Neville, whose impact includes helping start the Hawkettes, the Meters and the Neville Brothers, will receive the Big Easy Entertainment Awards' Lifetime Achievement Award in Music.
- Eddie Bo, the master of early New Orleans funk, will serve as honorary music chairman.
- Lionel Ferbos' myriad accomplishments over his 92 years earn him the Music Heritage Award.
- Jon Cleary was in on three Big Easy nominations: Best Male Performer, with his band the Absolute Monster Gentlemen as Best R&B Artist, and Best Album.
- Ingrid Lucia's return to the Crescent City earned her a nomination for Best Female Performer.
- Paulette Wright-Davis scored a nomination for Best Gospel Group/Individual.
Snooks Eaglin, still going strong with his unique guitar-picking style, copped a Best Blues Artist nomination.
Modern rockers The Pleasure Club received nominations for Best Album and Best Rock Band and a Best Male Performer nod to lead singer James Hall.
- Fiddling wunderkind Amanda Shaw received a nod in the Emerging Artist category.